Rheinmetall: Exchange? Only Bundestag decides what Ukraine will get
BERLIN ($1=0.98 Euros) — The German company Rheinmetall issued a special press release, distributed only in German on the company’s website. Reason: the media ask Rheinmetall about the ongoing political consultations on the war in Ukraine.
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“Only the federal government decides what equipment the Bundeswehr will receive and whether support to Ukraine or other partner countries will be provided directly or in other ways – for example as a ‘ring exchange,'” the press release said.
Apparently, the tension along the German-Polish political axis is gradually starting to escalate. Most likely, German or Polish media [we assume, not claim – ed.] tried to contact the German manufacturer. Most likely, the topics were not within the competence of the German manufacturer.
BulgarianMilitary.com recalls that Germany promised Poland Leopard 2A4 tanks [between 40 and 50 – the number keeps changing] in exchange for the 200 T-72 tanks sent to Ukraine. This was called “ring exchange”. Polish media reported that Germany’s federal government had changed the deal. Instead of the promised Leopard 2A4s to Poland, Berlin is ready to give 100 Leopard 1 tanks and Marder BMPs. BulgarianMilitary.com also wrote about this proposal.
On the Polish side, they assumed that Germany did not have the promised available tanks. The Poles assumed that they had fallen victim to “cannibalism”. I.e. stored tanks in warehouses, including that of Rheinmetall, have been used in recent years as spare parts for tanks in the inventory of the Bundeswehr or foreign customers who also operate the Leopard 2.
The German company Rheinmetall also says in its press release that it receives many inquiries from the media daily regarding the intensely political discussion related to the defense of Ukraine. In the public sphere, as well as in politics, there is an intense discussion about how Ukraine should be supported in its defense against Russian aggression. “Five months ago, after Chancellor Scholz’s turning-the-corner speech, the federal government asked German industry for significant contributions to support Ukraine. We responded quickly to this request and have been in close contact with the government ever since,” the company said.
“Rheinmetall sees its role in ongoing processes as supporting the federal government where it is wanted or needed with its technological know-how and relevant industrial services. This applies both to the needs-based equipment of the Bundeswehr and to military support services for Ukraine or other countries,” added Rheinmetall.
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